POST TIME: 10 March, 2018 00:00 00 AM
scaled-up admission criteria
RU losing research students
Jahidul Islam, RU

RU losing research students

Various research institutes and departments of Rajshahi University (RU) are losing MPhil and PhD researchers due to the imposition of new rules and restrictions for aspirant students.

Present researchers say the number of fellows has been decreasing since the grade point required for admission

was raised.

The university authorities now want students aspiring to take admission to have higher GPA and CGPA than those who have already completed MPhil and PhD from here.

Sources say the GPA has been raised by 0.25 to 1.25 for SSC and HSC examinations, while the CGPA has been increased by 0.25 in case of graduate and post-graduate degrees respectively, making it difficult for interested researchers to apply.

Sources also say that in the last five years, 119 students have taken admission to the MPhil degree programme. As many as 52 enrolled for the PhD programme in the 2012-13 session, 118 MPhil and 54 PhD fellows for the 2013-14 session, 153 MPhil and 37 PhD fellows for the 2014-15 session, 116 and 51 students for MPhil and PhD programmes for the 2015-16 session, while only 49 MPhil fellows and 22 PhD students took admission for the following year.

Earlier, former RU vice-chancellor (VC) Prof. Mohemmed Mizanuddin had increased the qualification criteria at a syndicate meeting, the university’s highest policymaking body, asking for GPA 4.25, instead of 3, out of 5, both in the SSC and HSC.  For CGPA, the requirement was raised to 3.25 out of 4 for Arts, Social Science and Fine Arts faculties at the undergraduate level; it was raised to 3.50 for both the Law and Science faculties. For MMBS/BDS students, the CGPA needed was raised to 3.50 out of 4.

Johurul Islam Moon, a former Genetics Engineering student of RU, said he was not eligible to take admission to his university’s Institute of Biological Science (IBS), albeit qualifying for other universities at home and abroad with his GPA and CGPA scores. He eventually applied to a research institute in Germany. He demanded that the admission criteria at RU be relaxed.

Prof. Monjur Ahsan, director of IBS, said they were gradually losing students because of the more demanding criteria.

He also said the institute was being forced to cut down on research activities due to insufficient students.

He disclosed that they have discussed the problem with the RU VC, M Abdus Sobhan, and sought a scaling down of the admission requirements. He said the VC has agreed to relax the admission criteria, but no step has been taken in that direction yet.

On the other hand, the director of the Institute of Bangladesh Studies, Prof. Swarochish Sarker, said around 80–100 students had applied to his institute for admission this year, but only 30 have been selected because of a limited number of seats. The university authorities have raised the admission benchmark because the number of applicants far outmatched the seat availability, he added.

Prof. Sarker, however, said he has no information about whether the number of students in other departments

and institutes has increased or decreased this year.

RU pro-VC Prof. Ananda Kumar Saha said he does not know anything about the matter, but remedial measures would certainly be taken, if necessary.